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Dr-A-Greene
Dr-A-Greene, Doctor
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 190
Experience:  Clinical and Forensic Psychologist
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I was married for 29 years. Both of us have only been married this one time. 3 years ago w

Customer Question

I was married for 29 years. Both of us have only been married this one time. 3 years ago we lost our house in a fire and 6 months later my husband left me for his "girlfriend". I believe the fire was too much for him to handle, he is an only child. Although I have moved 100 miles away and have not seen or heard from him in over a year now, I found out today he & the girlfriend he cheated on me with, will be attending my nephews wedding in April here in my hometown. No one in my family has seen him in 2 years but now he will be attending the wedding for my Nephew. Am I over reacting? I have not even dated since we split. Do u think I need to find a date, or just show up and act like the Lady that I am. I can't believe this girlfriend would even want to attend my family's event. Please give me insight. Thank you.
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  Dr-A-Greene replied 2 years ago.

Dr-A-Greene :

I would like to help you if I could. It sounds like you're doing okay, but that this threw you for a loop. Can I ask you a few questions?

Customer:

Please go ahead and ask.

Dr-A-Greene :

So, what is your biggest fear about your husband showing up at the wedding with this girlfriend?

Customer:

Not sure, I know I still love him and always will, I really just don't want to see either of them. I can't understand after all my family has seen me go thru with him, why they would want either of them there. They have cried many tears over his action the past few years, I have too but I thought I was doing okay until I received this news today that they were coming to my hometown and my family's wedding.

Dr-A-Greene :

I'm sure it must come as a huge blow. I'm not completely certain why he would choose to come to the wedding either, but after being married for as long as you were, I'm sure there are some relationships there that continue to exist. So, basically, you're worried about what you will feel when you see him (and him with her)? It sounds like it might be intimidating because, in a sense, it will force you to deal with feelings you have about the separation. Does that sound accurate?

Dr-A-Greene :

Have you been able to process the divorce or what led up to it with your ex-husband at all prior to this?

Customer:

Not at all. We had the fire & 6 months later he walked out. It wasn't until later I found out he was living with someone. I never knew about his girlfriend. I thought he was just having a breakdown from the fire. He was 6 months away from retiring from work. It was only later I found out he had a girl on the side, for over 10 years. He won't speak to me at all. I tried to get back together with him a few months after he moved out and that was when he told me about his girlfriend. I do not want to ever get back together with him, I am over that chapter of my life. I do love him because he was my first and only, but I no longer respect him because he cheated on me and my family. I really needed him after the fire and he ran away when it got tough. This isn't someone u could count on and I realize this. I know God had done me a favor and I never want him back in my life, I just get upset at the thought of having to see him and her together. Do I just need to suck it up for this hour and leave it at that? what would u do?

Dr-A-Greene :

Well, it's complicated. I guess it depends on the relationship I had with my family and what the expectations are. Assuming that you're close to your nephew, I would go to the wedding, yes. I would also be cordial and try to be as nice as possible if contact occurred. However, I would respectfully XXXXX XXXXX you not be seated near them (if there is a dinner or reception). Ultimately it's your nephew's day and they can have who they want at the wedding. For that reason alone, I would probably try to suck it up. That being said, bringing your own date could serve as a buffer, if you're game.

Customer:

Believe it or not, we had a great marriage. Or at least I thought we did. He did go to the hunting club every weekend and on lots of fishing trips. I found out later she lives by his hunting club. Maybe this is just a case of "male middleageing", I don't think there really was a problem in our marriage I just think thing about retiring got to him. He starting asking like he was afraid he was getting old. Funny, I always thought we would grow old together.

Dr-A-Greene :

Well, I think that you did grow together. Maybe not until death, but you certainly learned and loved a lot during your time. I also think that you probably have a lot of life ahead of you that can be even more meaningful. It's interesting, you said in your initial answer to a question that you thought you were doing okay until this came up. My sense is that you are doing okay despite this. Additionally, remember two things: 1) you're the one with your priorities straight. You didn't run right out and get a boyfriend - you took care of what needed to be done. 2) he'll be getting a lot of dirty looks from your supportive relatives. I wouldn't worry about that!

Customer:

Thank you for the advise. I am close to my family, my nephew & sister live across the street from me and my other sister lives a block away, we all eat diner together at least 5 times a week!!! I am very Blessed. Yes I took the high road, even though it hurts. I appreciate the advise, I haven't started dating yet but maybe this will be the time to think about it. I don't think I will try to find a date for the wedding, Thanks to your advise I now feel secure enough to go alone to his wedding. I just needed to hear someone else tell me that life is getting better. I am only a woman with real feelings, I know there will be days like this, but I am trying to take each day at a time. Thank you for your time.

Dr-A-Greene :

You're very welcome - I admire your strength in all this - I really do. To lose everything in a fire and then the relationship... you are truly an inspiration. And, my hunch is that there are more than a few unattached men out there that will think the same thing. Good luck to you, stay strong (for the wedding), and know that you can gossip about it afterwords! ;)

Customer:

Thank you for the kind words, I will try to pick up and carry on, Always...I made it this far, thanks for reminding me of that... Linda

Dr-A-Greene, Doctor
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 190
Experience: Clinical and Forensic Psychologist
Dr-A-Greene and 2 other Mental Health Specialists are ready to help you
Expert:  Dr-A-Greene replied 2 years ago.

Take care Linda - I'm wishing you the best!

Dr. G.

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